Heart Drug Digoxin May Not Be Best for Some Heart Patients
TUESDAY, May 5, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Taking the heart drug digoxin may increase the risk of premature death in patients with an irregular heartbeat and in those suffering from heart failure, German researchers report.
In the review of published studies on the subject, patients treated with digoxin had a 21 percent increased risk of early death overall from any cause, compared with patients not taking the drug. Among patients with the irregular heart rhythm known as atrial fibrillation, researchers found a 29 percent greater risk of premature death, while the increased risk was 14 percent among heart failure patients.
"Digoxin should be used with great caution," said lead researcher Dr. Stefan Hohnloser, a professor of cardiology at the J.W. Goethe University in Frankfurt.
"There are better drugs for many patients, for instance in those who receive the drug for atrial fibrillation," he said, which include beta blockers and calcium channel blockers.Read entire article...